Top 7 Tips For Apartment Hunting in Spain
Posted by Sammie
The do's and don'ts of apartment hunting in Spain. Quick, helpful and relevant tips to make the search that much easier and less frustrating
Depending on where you’re looking in Spain, apartment hunting can be an actual nightmare. Not to worry the nightmare always ends-most of the time! This is a follow up to our more general article, apartments in Spain.
Here are the top 7 Tips To Make Apartment Hunting In Spain That Much Easier:
- If You Like it Take It!-If you find something you like on day one or two of the search, don’t wait. The tendency is to ‘sleep on it’ and think you’ll find something better but chances are you won’t and if you leave it-it’ll go. The good ones go fast!
- Call Don’t Email-People in Spain aren’t attached to their computers and their email. By the time they pick up your email the apartment may very well be rented. Call and ask for a time that you can see it. (buy a lot of phone credit)
- Be Flexible about EVERYTHING!-This mostly applies to those without the ‘money tree’ in their backyard. If you can’t afford to pay a lot, you must be flexible. Take all ideas of what you had in mind for an apartment and erase them! Then decide what’s most important to you. Location, living alone, cleanliness, space, natural light, price etc… The last few things on the list will probably have to be compromised as it’s incredibly hard to find everything you want in an apartment in Spain. Be open to having a roommate if you want a nicer and cheaper place, be open to living in a small space if you want to live in the centre of town.
- Think outside The Box-So you’ve found a great flat for two people but you’re short a body - you have options! If you don’t have a roommate but have found a great place, take it, put an ad on the internet, (http://www.loquo.com) chances are it’ll be rented within the day or within the next day. Most one bedroom apartments are very expensive, older and not as nice. (see more on apartment prices here)
- Make Nights Available-Most agencies and landlords will ask you to come between 5-8PM so prepare to be available during the nights when you start the search. (Sundays are useless people barely check email or answer their phones. Get up Monday morning at 9AM, make the calls, take a siesta from 2-5 then go for it)
- Embrace the Agencies-A concept that might seem foreign to many as it seems ridiculous to pay someone for finding you an apartment and most people try to avoid them, but it is almost impossible (especially in Barcelona) to rent an apartment without going through an agency. You can try to boycott the apartment agencies but some apartments you find on Internet sites are tied to agencies anyway (even when they say it’s through the owner). Agencies also tend to have the newer and nicer apartments.
- Ask For What You Want-Just because the ad on the internet specifies a certain price and specific dates, doesn’t always mean the owner and/or agency are set in their ways. If you want something particular, if you want to lower the rent, extend the contract, put furniture in an unfurnished place don’t be afraid to ask! People are usually open to suggestions and bottom line is that they want to rent their apartments. You may not get anywhere if you ask, then again you just might!